1) Reuben had lived for the moment, at the end of every day, when he was finally released from the desk to go and run errands. Ruth had watched the way he sprang up, suddenly alive. And she had noticed how a certain errand increasingly brought a smile to his face and a special spring to his leap.
When he had been sent to buy olives or oil from Rosa's father, how could he not have noticed the daughter who was also ripening? Ruth could guess exactly how it had come about, though her brother would never have thought to taint what he believed were her innocent ears with confidences about his physical passions.
Can anyone explain me the bold sentence. I don't get it at all!!
Oh, the way the brother tainted his faith is he changed from on religious to another that brought shame to his family.
2) His love for his daughter marched hand in hand with a kind of contempt for her.
So he loves his daughter but also hates her? like love/hate relationship??
#1 To taint something means to spoil it by introducing something malignant or damaging. Milk can be tainted by a noxious substance. So her brother does not want to spoil her innocence by letting her hear about his behaviour.
#2 Yes - - though "hate" is too strong a word. He loves his daughter, but she is only a daughter so does not warrant great respect.